2011 was another banner year for the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) initiating 23 and 25 enforcement actions, respectively, and collecting nearly $355 million and $148 million in fines. Numerous individual defendants were prosecuted under the FCPA, some successfully, and some not so successfully, as individuals elected to hold the government to its burden and take their chances at trial. 2011 had more trials (by far) than any other year in the history of the statute, including, in one notable instance, a trial judge throwing out a jury conviction under the FCPA due to purported prosecution misconduct.
We here at Squire Sanders have prepared a digest of the many varied and nuanced 2011 FCPA enforcement actions, summarizing the underlying conduct leading to each enforcement action, the actions’ respective resolutions, and highlighting noteworthy aspects of each prosecution. Squire Sanders 2011 FCPA Enforcement Action Summary is available here.
As we look forward to 2012, the government’s position on FCPA enforcement appears unchanged; the government will continue to follow the well publicized message of Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer that “prosecuting individuals – and levying substantial criminal fines against corporations – are the best ways to capture the attention of the business community.”